28 October 2007

Monday's Musing

This is one of my absolute favorite quotes.

"...let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself -- nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance." - Franklin D. Roosevelt

Think about it. Isn't it true that fear is most often the thing stopping progress? Fear of action. Fear of inaction. Fear of rejection. Fear of the unknown. Fear of....

Have a great week everyone!


26 October 2007

Happy Anniversary (to me!)

Some people never meet their soul mates. But I did. And I had the amazing good fortune to marry him 11 years ago today. Happy anniversary, my love! My life is rich because you are in it.

A friend read this poem at our wedding. It's one of our favorites. :)

The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that, the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

-Robert Frost

Have a great weekend, everyone!


23 October 2007

Am I Lucky or What?!

I mean, really, I got the perfect Secret Pal gift: green laceweight alpaca. And once I got past drooling over the alpaca, I found all the other really cool stuff in the box, too!
Like a nifty little neckwarmer (I couldn't get a good picture of it, so I'm gonna have to wait for the hubby to do his photo magic), cool little stacking boxes to hold my beads (because you can never have too many places to put beads, don'tcha know!), fun little pens, lavender bath gel (I love lavender!), candy, tea...it was too much fun to open it.

It was definitely the highlight of my day!

Oh, and I might have already broken into the laceweight to do a beaded Muir swatch! Here's a little photo teaser.

I'm afraid it's a bit difficult to see the beads on it. I'll have a full beaded chart up this weekend, but for now, have fun with the swatch chart! :)

And in other news...
AgnesB finished her Muir! Isn't it lovely!?

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21 October 2007

Monday's Musing

Like an unchecked cancer, hate corrodes the personality and eats away its vital unity. Hate destroys a man's sense of values and his objectivity. It causes him to describe the beautiful as ugly and the ugly as beautiful, and to confuse the true with the false and the false with the true.
- Martin Luther King Jr. (1929 - 1968)

Enough said? Or not? I often wonder what hatred really is and why it exists. Do we hate that which or those who we do not understand? Is hatred a reaction to the hated or does it just come from the hater's internal anger, without reference to that which is hated? Why do some hate when others do not? Who does it hurt most? The hater? The hated? The bystanders? Everyone?


20 October 2007

Everybody was Kung Fu Fighting

Those cats were fast as lightening
In fact it was a little bit frightening.
But they did it with expert timing.
- Carl Douglas

#1 Son won first place in kata for his division! Wooooo! Just look at that smile. :) We had some chocolate espresso cheesecake to celebrate his victory! Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

In other news, Ishi in Japan finished her Muir! And so did Jenni in Finland! Aren't they lovely?!

And in answer to Debi's request to see my earrings that made it into Vogue, well! here they are.

I still don't have the magazine, but I hear it's on the way. :)

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18 October 2007

Gen-U-ine Knitting Content

I know things have been fairly sparse blogwise around here lately, what with all the work on my book and my yarnball earrings (scroll down) appearing in Vogue (woooooooo!). But today, I have real, honest-to-goodness actual gen-u-ine knitting content!

I've actually done a little bit of relaxation knitting on the cover project, Komon, from Knit Kimono (I love this book!). I went stash diving and came up with a wool yarn that has a lot of drape to it: the Novelty Buotone from Handpaintedyarn.com, color Treintaytres. I didn't swatch (I didn't feel like it - so there!), but so far so good! :) Here is some tweedy goodness:

And a look at the stitch pattern.

It is super easy to memorize. Perfect for mindless little bits of time, and for Saturday morning knitting group (my "me" time every week!) when I can talk and not get completely screwed up from lack of concentration.

And here is a little teeny tiny teaser for a project in my book.

I know. It's a really small clue. But it is coming out so cool that I can't wait for everyone to see. :) It looks way cooler than the sketch I drew up! Which is a very very good thing, if you get my drift. It's just a good thing that my wonderful editor can see beyond the clunky sketches!

Hope everyone has been having a great week!

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14 October 2007

Monday's Musing

This is one of my favorite stories that I've seen floating around the internet. Jen D. posted a story in last Monday's comments that got me thinking about this one. So then I couldn't wait until the next Monday to post it! Author unknown.

A philosophy professor stood before his class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, wordlessly he picked up a large empty jar and proceeded to fill it with rocks of golf ball size. He then asked the students if the jar was full? They agreed that it was.

So the professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles, of course, rolled into the open areas between the rocks. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was. The students laughed.

The professor picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else.

"Now," said the professor, "I want you to recognise that this is your life. The rocks are the important things - your family, your partner, your health, and your children - things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full. The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house, your car. The sand is everything else, the small stuff. If you fill the jar with sand first, there is no room for the pebbles or the rocks.

"The same goes for your life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you. Pay attention to things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take time to get medical check-ups. Take your partner out dancing. There will always be time to go to work, clean the house, give a dinner party or fix the disposal. Take care of the rocks first - the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand."

What do you think? True? Overly simplistic?

I found the following addition to the story as well (here) and had a good laugh! :)

But a student took the jar which the other students and the professor agreed was full, and proceeded to pour in a glass of beer. Of course the beer filled the remaining spaces within the jar making the jar truly full.

The moral of this tale is: no matter how full your life is, there is always room for a beer!

Have a wonderful week!


13 October 2007

Llama llama bunny

Lorraine won't let me sing llama llama duck, so I have to improvise, you know? ;)

First, isn't this just the perfect llama promotional shot? I mean really.

And before we get into the llama obstacle course at the Harvest Fair, I have to show you a couple of cute kid shots. Here are #1 Son and Mr. Cool:

And Mr. Cool checking out the height on this llama!

Okey doke. Please forgive the blurriness of these pictures. Really, it's difficult to hold a camera when your jaw has dropped on the ground.

First we have the door on the advanced obstacle course. The contestants had to back their llamas through it, like this:

and this.

They had to side step back and forth over logs like this:

and this:

and then they went over to the ring.

The humans had to go first, which, in one case, presented a problem.

Some llamas refused to go. Of the ones that went, I tried to catch one in mid air, but alas, my reflexes had also been affected by my jaw dropping on the floor. This one had just jumped through.

They were amazingly fast! After the ring, they were off to go across a wobbly platform, up a ramp and down stairs and through a tunnel. I can honestly say I have never seen anything like it! It was very very cool. :)

Now, of course, no post could be complete without a picture of the new bunny that Mr. Cool won in the rabbit show raffle. So, without further ado, here he is:

Pepper the bunny, caught while having a little snack. :)

Be well everyone!

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10 October 2007


First, thank you all so much who left comments on my Monday's Musing! I so enjoyed reading what you all said! And some of the stories brought to mind other great stories. You rock. Big time.


This past weekend we went to the Sonoma Harvest Fair (early in the morning!) so that #1 Son and Dart could participate in the rabbit show. And there was much bunny eye candy to be had! :)

Here's an angora being blown dry.

It was so funny to watch, because the rabbit just sat there patiently! Now if this had been Dart, who is a Rhinelander, he would have been in the next state by the time anyone went after him! But not this mellow guy.

Here is angora breeder Betty Chu with some of her handspun. Soft does not begin to describe it!

Here is one of Betty's angoras after beautification. Yes, I think there are some eyes in there. Somewhere.

And for the main show, here's #1 Son and Dart.

Dart did very well, coming in as 2nd place Rhinelander buck in the first show and Opposite of Breed in the second show.

Opposite of Breed is one of those terms that made me stare dully when I first heard it. But then I got the lowdown and here's how it goes on the rabbit show circuit: the best doe and best buck of the particular breed compete against each other for Best of Breed. Then the second place rabbit is Opposite of Breed. Got that? :g:

So then what happened you ask? Mr. Cool, the child formerly known as Dr. Destructo, won a rabbit in the raffle. Yep. A Himalayan named Cosmo, who was almost immediately renamed Pepper and spoiled rotten with homegrown carrots. He is now livin' the life of RileyRabbit.

Pics of Pepper to follow next post, along with the llama obstacle course. Now isn't that worth coming back to see? :)

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07 October 2007

Monday's Musing

"They came first for the Communists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn't speak up because I was a Protestant.

Then they came for me,
and by that time no one was left to speak up."
- from the New England Holocaust Memorial: attributed to Martin Niemöller

This is a poem about Nazi Germany, of course. But how does it apply to our daily lives? How many times do we see inequities that we could affect in some way, and yet turn the other way, not wanting to get involved? How many times do we let someone's ugly behavior slide by unchallenged because we don't want to get involved? Or were afraid to say anything? I know I have done this and wrongly felt myself reasonable and calm in difficult situations where I should have taken a stand for what was right.

In the end, we are all in this together; the poem is absolutely right. No one is safe or immune. If one person can be treated unfairly, we all can be treated the same way. I try to ask myself: "what if this were me?"

So what do you think? To what situations in your life does this poem apply? Globally? Locally?


Muir Chart

A few people have asked me for my original Muir chart, so I've posted it here as a pdf. It uses symbols I am more used to than the Knitty standard chart symbols. Enjoy! :)

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03 October 2007

Knitting Globally and Other Stuff

Okay. What is the coolest thing about the knitting world? This! And this! And this! How cool is it that our knitting community is so global!?

Those of you on Ravelry who are knitting Muir, come on over and join us in the Muir-along! Those of you not on Ravelry, I've set up a Yahoo Group here.

Now. About that contest.... The picture was taken in a studio using full studio lighting. The image behind the wine is an 8.5 x 11 inch inkjet print of a stock photo (and yes, they thought we were weird when we said what we wanted it for!) taped up on the backdrop. It looks cool in the final product but it looked pretty silly in the studio! Things often happen that way. So if you said that it was taken in front of a poster or photo or print of some kind in my home or studio, I entered you! And then I got a random number over at random.org and...the winner is :drumroll: Marlene! Congratulations! Could you please email me at romi AT designsbyromi DOT com with your snailmail address? Thanks! :)

On to Monday's Musing. Wow! What incredibly cool comments you all left! I loved reading them! Thank you so much. As for me, if I knew I could not fail, I would cure childhood disease and mental illness, and then I'd be off to find a clean and renewable energy source and restore the environment. Maybe a bungee jump off the Golden Gate Bridge just for fun would be in order, as well. I was going to mention whirled peas too, but I figured I'd leave that for someone else who couldn't fail. ;)

Thank you all for playing and commenting!

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